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The family of Edmonton Oilers’ forward Colby Cave was shown an outpouring of support Monday as hundreds of cars lined a highway in Saskatchewan, Canada, as the family returned home just days after his death.
The Battlefords North Stars, a junior league hockey team in Cave’s hometown, posted a memo on their Facebook asking people to form a line of vehicles along Highway 16 in North Battleford at around 3:30 p.m. as the family returned home from Toronto.
“Wear your Hockey Jerseys, or make up signs and whatever you feel in letting Al, Jen, Taylor and the rest of the family know we are thinking of them in this time of need,” the post read.
Several pictures posted to social media showed hundreds of cars lined up waiting for the Cave family to be escorted back by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Battleford Fire Department.
“Supposedly there is 15km+ of cars lined up outside Battleford right now waiting for the family of Colby Cave,” former Oilers defenseman Eric Gryb wrote on Twitter as he waited in line.
“A heartbreaking and heartwarming time,” he continued.
Cave was placed in a medically induced coma last week after suffering a brain bleed and undergoing surgery to remove a colloid cyst that was causing pressure on his brain. On Saturday, his wife Emily announced his passing.
“It is with great sadness to share the news that our Colby Cave passed away early this morning,” the statement read. “I (Emily) and both our families are in shock but know our Colby was loved dearly by us, his family and friends, the entire hockey community, and many more. We thank everyone for their prayers during this difficult time.”
Cave scored one goal in 11 games with the Oilers this season. He spent time with the American Hockey League’s Bakersfield Condors, scoring 11 goals with 23 points in 44 games.
Before he joined the Boston Bruins for the 2014-15 season, Cave played five seasons with the Swift Current Broncos, a Western Hockey League team. He joined the Oilers in 2019.